Have you been living in the past lately?
Reminiscing with your loved one about yesterdays (the past is recalled with more clarity than today); thinking about your life before you were caring for someone with dementia; recalling past summers when your family member was healthy and well. It’s very normal to look into the past with frequency and longing while living with Alzheimer’s disease.
However, I have a suggestion for today. Go and have a picnic! Caregivers and people living with dementia need to have fun and joy in their lives now. With summer at its best, take time today to create a lasting memory.
- Choose a place that you both enjoy. Think about the scenery, ease for walking, overall comfort, shade and table availability. Consider a location that will be quiet and free from crowds, which can increase confusion. You may end up in your own backyard!
- Consider inviting some family or friends to join you. Friends are often eager to spend time with you and your loved one. This would be a great opportunity.
- Create and plan a menu together. Indulge and choose your favorite foods. You are celebrating!
- Consider your best time of the day and plan accordingly. If early morning is your loved one’s best time of day, then have a breakfast picnic.
- Bring along some things to converse about while you enjoy your food (a kite, a deck of cards, a family photo album, a nature book or magazine, a baseball and glove).
- Plan for a quick picnic; you may not be able to linger. An area with a walking path may work well, so you have something to do when you finish your meal.
- Bring along your camera and take some photos to recall your positive time together!
Act fast, July is National Picnic Month.